Our teachers are in a contract dispute with the city. We have 6th graders in this elementary school.
I am part of the 6th grade committee and I am in charge of making our kids year full and memorable. Due to the teachers contract dispute, we are not having any field trips. I asked if we could use the money that has been allocated for field trips to be used for an outside of school activity. I was told it has to be for educational purposes.
Is their anything in the bylaws that states money can be use for something else other than education use? -
In our experience, pretty much every parent group spends money on things that are not strictly educational -- but still benefit the school. For example, holding a Family Movie Night at the school isn't academic. It doesn't tie in with the curriculum. But it helps make families feel more connected to the school community. And having a supportive community has tremendous benefits for students and the school as a whole.
You might discuss with the principal just what "educational" should mean. It sounds like some have a pretty narrow view. But I think it's easy to argue that a broader definition would benefit everyone.
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Just wanted to add to give your bylaws a look. There could be some language in there that would help clarify. But as Craig points out, there are many activities and programs that may not have a specifically defined academic focus but support an overall positive school environment, which helps foster a better learning experience for the kids.